Need-Based Financial Aid

The primary focus of the financial aid program at St. Olaf is to provide access to a St. Olaf education for students who would not otherwise be able to afford to attend.  We welcome students from diverse socio-economic backgrounds and maintain a long-standing commitment to meet the demonstrated need of all students who are admitted to the College.

St. Olaf awards need-based financial aid using information captured by the College Board’s financial aid application (CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE), the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), and some supplemental income and asset documentation. The CSS PROFILE is required for determining St. Olaf need-based financial aid funds, while the FAFSA is required for federal and state funds.

By requiring each family applying for need-based aid to submit the PROFILE and FAFSA forms, we ensure a fair and consistent approach to determining the demonstrated need of all admitted students. We review each application and each family’s financial circumstances individually, applying a consistent methodology to determine a family’s ability to contribute (thus assuring equity in the process) but also recognizing that special and extenuating circumstances can affect a family’s financial need.